Richard B. Sheridan. The Rivals. A Comedy, In Five Acts. New York: S. King, 1822. King edition, first published in 1775. Sixteenmo (4.625 x 2.625 inches; 115 x 65 mm.). , 110 pages. Contemporary half sheepskin over marbled paper-covered boards, spine ruled in gilt with a red gilt-lettered label; all edges of the text block sprinkled brown; plain endpapers (lacking the front free), flyleaves. Covers rubbed, backstrip and corners quite worn; front joint partially split but holding firm; small chip to the spine label; board edges worn; corners bumped. Front endpaper possibly excised with only the pastedown and flyleaf remaining (possible that there was never a front flyleaf); endpapers and text foxed. Good.
"The 'Rivals' was Sheridan's first play; it was produced at Convent Garden, January 17, 1775. Like the first plays of many another dramatist who has afterward succeeded abundantly, it failed dismally on its first performance, and again on the second, the night after. It was immediately withdrawn; in all probability, it was somewhat rewritten; and of a certainty it was very much shortened" (Brander Matthews, Sheridan's Comedies, Boston: 1885, pp. 64-65). (#10340).